In this bulletin:

  • Crop & pest update
  • Spotted wing drosophila monitoring
  • Herbicide drift
  • Using temporary help agencies and employment standards webinar

Strawberries: Growers across the province spent the May 29th weekend irrigating and putting row covers on and off for frost protection. The protection measures minimized the damage but unfortunately there is frost damage to June-bearing strawberries in central and eastern Ontario.  The amount of damage is variable depending on the variety and crop stage.  

Day-neutral harvest continues on over-wintered fields, and early row-covered June-bearing strawberries are being picked this week.  Fields that weren’t row-covered are ripening in southern Ontario and harvest could begin later this week in southern Ontario and next week in eastern Ontario.   

In new day-neutral plantings remove flower buds and bloom until the plant is well established, around 4-6 leaves.

Cyclamen mite: If you are seeing cyclamen mite damage in your fields prepare to apply a miticide after bloom. To confirm it is cyclamen mite look at the youngest leaves. They will look crispy and the mite eggs will look like piles of salt inside the folded leaves. Your options are Agri-mek or Vegol Crop Oil. Spray the entire block or the entire variety where you are finding mites and damage.

Tarnished plant bugs (TPB) and Aphids: continue monitoring for TPB in day-neutral and June-bearing fields.  Group 3s, Rimon, and Beleaf can be used for TPB during bloom. Beleaf at the high rate will suppress TPB and control aphids. Aphids need to be monitored and controlled throughout the season.

New plantings: Keep an eye on new plantings for gypsy moth larvae.  Look for holes in leaves and check the underside of the leaves for the caterpillar. See management recommendations below in blueberries. Also watch for flea beetles in new fields.  Some of the insecticides applied for aphids will also provide some control of flea beetles, including Assail, Cygon or Lagon. Malathion may also provide some efficacy when applied for leafhoppers.

Anthracnose: There is some rain in the forecast this week and although it is welcomed it also means it’s important to have your strawberries protected for anthracnose and botrytis before a rain.  Anthracnose builds up in warm weather and is spread by splashing rain or irrigation. For June-bearing strawberries rotate between Switch and a group M for anthracnose control during bloom. Do not rely on group 11s alone.  For day-neutral growers use a group M when possible- there is a 6-day REI for captan and maestro. During harvest rotate between Switch (group 12+9), Diplomat (19) and Quadris Top (11+3). Miravis Prime (7+12) is a new product registered for botrytis control on strawberries, and also has some efficacy on anthracnose. Do not make more than three applications of fludioxonil-containing products (eg Switch, Miravis Prime, Scholar) on strawberries per year.

Disease survey: Katie Goldenhar, OMAFRA’s Hort Crops Pathologist, and I are surveying for a new strawberry disease, Neopestalotiopsis. If any growers or consultants are seeing weird leaf spots or fruit rots please let us know. You can email me at or Katie at For more information and pictures check out our previous  blog post: Pest Alert: Neopestalotiopsis.

Blueberries: are at bloom-petal fall.  

Cranberry fruitworm and cherry fruitworm: spray for these fruitworms at petal fall.  You will need 1-2 well timed insecticides for cranberry fruitworm and cherry fruitworm control.  

Gypsy moth: All blueberry growers should be checking for gypsy moth caterpillars, especially in younger plantings where they can tolerate less damage. Bt products are effective options for control when the caterpillars are small, but once they develop a yellow head and are longer than 2.5cm other products are needed to achieve control. Insecticides applied for leafrollers will also have some activity on gypsy moth larvae.


Raspberries are starting to bloom. If you are seeing leaf shredding check for raspberry sawfly- bristly green larvae on the lower leaf surface of shredded leaves. Damage from raspberry sawfly larvae is rarely excessive and controls are not often needed.  Keep watching for raspberry fruitworm and strawberry clipper weevil until bloom. Do not apply an insecticide during bloom. Make sure raspberries are getting adequate irrigation.

Spotted Wing Drosophila:

We have set up traps and started monitoring for SWD at a few sites this year. Thanks to the consultants and growers who are helping with the monitoring.  No SWD have been captured so far.  Applying insecticides for SWD is not necessary until SWD is present in your area and there is ripe fruit present. Calibrate your sprayers now to ensure excellent coverage once you start to spray. Once harvest begins plan to pick every other day if possible (every day is even better), and cool fruit immediately after harvest. Also, have a plan for removing unmarketable fruit from the field.

Herbicide drift: Check out this blog post for information on what to do if you are concerned about herbicide drift: You Suspect Herbicide Drift- Now What?


Agriculture Sector: Using Temporary Help Agencies and Employment Standards Webinar

Tuesday, June 22nd 12:00 – 1:00 PM ET

When faced with a labour shortage, many employers in the agriculture sector turn to a temporary help agency (THA) for assistance. But did you know clients of agencies have legal obligations when using a THA? Before speaking with an agency, clients of agencies should find out what their responsibilities are under the ESA.

To help support Ontario’s agriculture sector, the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development (MLTSD) and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) are partnering to offer a session about employment standards as they relate to THAs. The session will provide an overview on:

  • the employment standards responsibilities of the agency and the client
  • things to consider when engaging a temporary help agency
  • the current THA inspection initiative

There will also be a Q&A period where you can ask and get answers to your own questions.

You must register in advance.  To register, follow this link.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting to learn more about your workplace obligations.  Follow our ONfruit blog for regular updates and berry information.

0 comments on “June 7 Berry Bulletin

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: